When Vidal Nuno made that spot start in Cleveland, everyone from Austin Romine to Joe Girardi seemed impressed by his poise. Nuno seemed unfazed by the situation. He wasn’t overwhelmed to be in a big league clubhouse, on a big league field or facing a big league lineup.
Trust be told, the same thing could have been said last night.
“One pitch, and it cost us the game,” Nuno said. “But got to forget about it, work hard tomorrow, and get ready for my next outing. … You learn from it. Next time, I’ve got to work hard. Keep working is what I’ve got to do, and tomorrow’s a different day.”
Tied game in the 10th inning couldn’t have been the easiest situation for a guy’s third big league appearance, especially when he’s a starter — used to being on a regular schedule — and he hadn’t pitched in more than a week. But after giving up the walk-off homer that provided both his first big league loss and his first big league run, Nuno’s personality was the same as always in the clubhouse. He saw a group of reporters coming toward his locker, he stood up and spoke calmly about what just happened.
“It’s not difficult (taking so much time between outings),” he said. “It’s just work. I’ve been working hard, and it’s just being in competition, facing hitters, getting in a rhythm. But it’s just, he just took advantage of a bad pitch. He went up on it, and they got a victory.”
Pretty cut and dry. Nothing overwhelming, just the fact of the matter. It remains to be seen how Nuno responds on the field, but in the clubhouse, he acted like he’d been there before and would have a chance to be better next time.
“He’s a great pitcher,” Dave Robertson said. “He’s been starting a lot at Triple-A, I think. In a situation like that, he’s going to come in and throw his best stuff. He left one pitch up, it looked like. It hung for just a second, just long enough for him to get a good swing on it and put it in the seats. I’ve had it happen to me too. It stinks whenever you make a mistake like that and lose a ballgame because no one wants to be the guy that loses a ballgame.”
Don’t forget: Chat today at noon. I would have done it on the off day, but I’m flying to Tampa in the late morning/early afternoon, so I figured we’d do one before the Yankees get out of town. Hope you can stop by for a while.
Associated Press photo